By Jennylou Canon

PHOTO: Philippines Lifestyle

On Monday, September 27, the Department of Health (DOH) and the Department of Education (DepEd) approved the guidelines for the limited face-to-face classes. 

The guidelines state that the teachers who will be participating in the pilot run must be fully vaccinated, must have no comorbidities, and must be aged 65 and under.

According to Health Secretary Francisco Duque, there will still be distant learning to avoid disenfranchising unvaccinated teachers and for the parents hesitant with the return of face-to-face learning.

“We are committed to providing additional protection for our teachers through vaccination. While vaccination is not mandatory, classroom learning will be limited to vaccinated teaching personnel. So as not to disenfranchise unvaccinated teachers, they may teach using distance or online modules. This also presents options for parents who are still hesitant to send their children to school,” Duque said.

DepEd Planning Service Director Roger Masapol also said that they and the DOH have “agreed that all school personnel should be fully vaccinated when they participate in the pilot face-to-face classes.”

Among the guidelines set were also the limited number of learners per grade group, and participating schools must pass DOH’s vetting and must obtain support from their local government units (LGUs).

Meanwhile, the DepEd also assured that if ever there will be a resurgence of COVID-19 cases in the areas of the participating schools and other possible scenarios, a contingency plan will be executed.

Currently, there are 120 schools approved for the pilot face-to-face classes, 100 of which are public schools and 20 are private schools.

There are also a maximum of 12 learners in Kindergarten, 12 learners for Grades 1 to 3, 20 learners for senior high school, and 12 learners for senior high school under technical-vocational livelihood strand.

Report source: GMA News